Today we catch up with freelance journalist Peter Carvill who is currently based in Berlin and available for shifts, feature-writing or corporate work. Formerly a reporter at Cover, his experience ranges across a wide range of publications such as Financial Adviser, Engaged Investor, The Insurance Insider, Seconds Out, Boxing Digest, and more.
About your journalism:
What do you write about?
I pretty much write about anything and everything. I started off as a sportswriter, working for websites such as The Sweet Science and Fight Beat where I was contributor for a couple of years. At the same time, I was one of the main editors on the 3am Magazine (www.3ammagazine.com) website. In 2007, I moved down to London and began working in the UK’s trade press. Most of my work nowadays comes from there.
Where are we likely to see your work?
My work is most likely to be seen in the UK’s trade press. I spent most of last year working as the assistant project manager for an employee magazine produced by a large IT corporation so didn’t spend too much time writing. However, I still managed to write pieces for Plansponsor Europe, Pensions Insight and The Insurance Insider among others. I live in Germany now but before I moved here, I spent a couple of months working on Financial Adviser’s newsdesk, which was an invaluable learning experience. I’ve a full list of where and who I’ve written for on my personal website – www.petercarvill.vpweb.co.uk
What’s the most memorable work you’ve done?
The one story I’m most proud of are two stories I wrote about PruProtect’s private medical insurance offerings and how, at the time, corporate customers were not automatically given continuation of cover when they switched to private plans. This was during the midst of the great recession when businesses seemed to be shedding staff continually. Following the articles, PruProtect brought in continuation of cover as an optional extra. (http://www.ifaonline.co.uk/cover/news/1298009/pru-cover-halt-risk-health)
What interview or feature would you love the chance to do?
I’m not sure if there’s a single feature I’d like to write or person to interview but I’ve long-standing ambitions to get something into the pages of The New York Times/International Herald Tribune and The Paris Magazine.
About you and PRs:
How can PRs be useful?
The best PR people – and among these I’m including Matt Morris, Charlie McEwan, Kevin Carr and Andy Milburn – have always been the ones that will give you an honest and quick response without any filler. They are the ones that are memorable because they were not afraid to tell it as it is when something needs to be said. It’s a quality sorely missed in some quarters.
How would you pay the bills if you weren’t a journalist?
I guess most people who know me already know this but I come from a boxing background and I’d probably try and make a living from working with fighters. I already run a white-collar boxing class over here with my business partner, who was undefeated in twenty-four amateur fights. It’s expanding nicely but, unfortunately, we can’t always give it the full attention it deserves as we have day jobs.
If we gave you £1,000, how would you spend it?
Good question. My much better half has just spent two weeks working in Sydney, Australia, so I probably would have used the money for a return flight there so I could have explored it with her. With that gone, I’d probably use the money to go back to Japan, where I lived for a while about five years ago.
What books are on your bedside table, magazines in your bag, or blogs on your screen?
McIlvanney on Boxing by Hugh McIlvanney is never far from me, and the same goes for Martha Gellhorn’s The View from The Ground and The Face of War. I’ve also just finished reading Robert Capa’s Slightly Out of Focus. I’m also a big fan of David Grann’s work, particularly his recent The Devil and Sherlock Holmes. Blog-wise, I tend to read Tabloid Watch, LongForm, LongReads, SportsFeat, Devil’s Kitchen and Crash Bang Wallace (the latter two are run by friends of mine).